Hot Air: Big, Brother, Boffo, Bombs

Big Talk Thursday

My guest today will be attorney, man about town, and WFIU deejay William Morris, AKA Brother William. He’s one of those fellows who, when you ask him what time it is, will read aloud from cover to cover Stephen Hawking’s A Brief History of Time. A radio interviewer’s dream.

I’ve had plenty of loquacious sorts on in recent weeks. All I have to do is set the studio up, sit in a chair, say Hi, this is Big Talk…, and 28 minutes of fun and informative broadcast content ensues. Sometimes I wonder if I’m taking the easy way out; perhaps I should track down some taciturn types.


Anyway, in the coming weeks Big Talk guests will include attorney Amelia Lahn, author Doug Wissing (he’s working on an ambitious history right now, one that is all too timely), and IU Informatics professor James Clawson, who specializes in health and cancer data.

The way I see it, if you don’t like Big Talk, you just don’t like learning about the people around you.

My Town

Big Mike’s B-town returns for its every-four-weeks appearance in Limestone Post today. I wonder: Is there a word for every four weeks? Lemme look it up….

… Well, I’ll be damned, I dug up a number of possibilities. They include:

  • quadrihebdomadal
  • quadweekly
  • quadriweekly
  • fwaply (for four-week-accounting-period)
  • bimonthly (like many bi- words, it can mean twice in the period or every other period)
  • bifortnightly
  • tetrahebdomadally
  • quadriseptimanally
  • duodetrigintally

Who knew? Come to think of it, let’s just stick with every four weeks, no?

Anyway, today’s LP feature is, of course, on Brother William. Every four weeks, I profile that day’s Big Talk guest on Limestone Post.

And, again, if you don’t like the Limestone Post, you just don’t like knowing about your own town, dig?

They Started The Whole World Laughing

Hot tip from my pal Yael Ksander: There’s a neat little public event scheduled for a week from tomorrow, Friday, March 2, at 7:30pm in Indiana University’s Fine Arts Auditorium. It’ll be a live conversation between Serbian activist Srđa Popović and Penn State prof. of Comparative Lit and Int’l Affairs Sophia McLennen. The two will gab about political satire and how it’s gaining…, well, gravitas in this day and age of “fake news.”

Popović, an exemplar of that famed Onion headline, “Clinton Deploys Vowels to Bosnia” (see, Bosnia and Serbia once were part of the same thing, y’know, Yugosl…, aw, forget it), was a big deal in the ousting of Serb strongman Slobodan Milošović. Popović was a leader of Otpor!, a grass-roots protest movement that essentially became a nonviolent revolutionary force. Milošović found it necessary to quit the Yugo presidency in 2000. For her part, McLennen is a renowned cogitator on global affairs who writes think pieces for the likes of Salon, Huffington Post, the Daily Beast, Counterpunch, and makes regular appearances as a talking head on countless TV news programs.

Hey, you live a in a college town so you may as well take advantage of it.

Bombs Away

Steve Volan wrote a hell of an open letter to John Hamilton re: this city’s decision to purchase an armored vehicle for its police force. The whole process, he wrote, “was a failure of transparency.” Go here to read it all.

The takeaway I get from this fiasco: Mayor John Hamilton has proven himself to be Bloomington’s most adept bomb-dropper. He consults with a precious few advisors (some might say that list consists of a single name) and then becomes convinced his decision is so right, so justified, that he simply goes ahead and imposes it upon the city, no matter the optics, no matter the reaction. It’s right, he mutters to himself, what do they know?

We don’t know everything, Mr. Mayor. It’s up to you and your people to bring us up to speed. Make your case. Justify yourself. Be a teacher. Start telling us why we need annexation or an armored vehicle before you drop those bombs on us. We, after all, are the voters.

And any more such bomb dropping just might cause a significant number of us to return the favor and drop the bomb on you come November, 2019.

I’m Not Deeply Sorry At All

As a self-deputized member of the language police, I hereby call for an end to the use of the phrase “deeply sorry.”

This, as you prob. know, is the go-to absolution politicians, actors, rock stars, and everybody else in the public eye who gropes an actress, drops an N-bomb, tears up a nightclub, beats a spouse, or otherwise makes a stinking horse’s ass out of himself uses in hopes of getting back in the public’s good graces. And yeah, I typed himself for the very good reason it’s usually men who make stinking horse’s asses out of themselves, although on occasion women have to resort to this particular odious form of a get-out-of-jail-free card.

I am deeply sorry, we now understand, is lawyerly lingo. Nobody in real life says I am deeply sorry. They say I’m sorry, sure. They say, I’m awfully sorry, maybe. But deeply sorry? Nah. It sounds so contrived, so CMA. Stop it.


One thought on “Hot Air: Big, Brother, Boffo, Bombs

  1. Catryna Loos says:

    Thanks for posting the link to Steve Volan’s letter. It was worth the read.

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